Posted by Bruce Morrison, General Manager, Ticketfly Canada
We’re more hyped up than a kid at Tim Hortons—today we’re welcoming Northern Tickets to the Ticketfly family. For the past five years, Northern Tickets has served as the in-house ticketing service of the prestigious MRG Group, which owns, operates, and manages premier music venues and events (in addition to restaurants and bars) across Canada.
This acquisition adds prominent new partners to our list, including some of the most storied Canadian venues and events, like the gorgeous Vogue Theatre, a historic 1300-cap room in downtown Vancouver; the brand new, industrial-chic Adelaide Hall, a 500-cap room in Toronto; and the incomparable Vancouver International Jazz Festival, which attracts nearly half a million visitors every year.
Since launching in Canada a little over two years ago, business has been on fire—we’re working with more than 120 partners across the country, and we see lots of room for growth. Adding Vogue Theatre to other Vancouver partners like Northwest Comedy Fest and Union Events solidifies our presence in one of the world’s key markets for live music.
Northern Tickets marks our second acquisition in Canada, and our fourth overall, and comes hot on the heels of our most successful year yet: In 2014, we crossed the $1 billion mark in cumulative gross ticket sales since selling our first ticket in 2009—$500 million of which was processed in 2014 alone (42% year-on-year growth)—and sold 16 million tickets.
Andrew Dreskin, our co-founder and CEO, and long-time regular on the Vancouver music scene, says: “Acquiring Northern Tickets and adding The MRG Group—owner and operator of legendary venues including Vancouver’s Vogue Theatre—to our client roster marks another momentous day in Ticketfly’s history. We are delighted to welcome them to the family. We’ve seen tremendous growth in Canada since launching there a couple years ago, with gross ticket sales up 80% year-over-year in 2014 alone. We’ve become the go-to solution for independent venues and promoters across Canada, and we believe that this transaction signals continued growth for us up there.”
Partnering with The MRG Group is a bit like getting pulled up on stage during a Rush concert: totally awesome. Made up of young, ambitious, and talented promoters, their team is one of the best in the business. Never satisfied with the status quo, they’re constantly seeking new ways to provide amazing experiences to patrons. They have exactly the spirit and passion we’re looking for in new partners as we continue ratcheting up explosive growth across Canada.
Matt Gibbons, President of The MRG Group, says: ““What we saw in Ticketfly was not only world class technology, but world class people with a shared belief in delivering the best experiences for fans. This is a merger of two great teams that will benefit immensely from one another. By partnering with Ticketfly, which offers the best integrated technology platform for live events, we at The MRG Group can focus on what we do best: providing exceptional hospitality.”
We’re breaking out the Molson to toast to new business and new partners. We look forward to working with The MRG Group and our other top tier Canadian partners as we reimagine live events for both promoters and fans across the Great White North.